Kansas City announces Paul Berardi will take over as chief of the Kansas City Fire Department

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Kansas City officially has a new fire chief. The city announced Thursday that Interim Fire Chief Paul Berardi was appointed as the permanent chief of Kansas City's Fire Department.

"In his short tenure as interim fire chief, Paul Berardi has exhibited the responsiveness, strength, leadership and determination the City of Kansas City needs in a fire chief," City Manager Troy Schulte said in a statement. "I believe Chief Berardi understands the critical challenges that face both our City and the KCFD and will address them with objectivity."

Berardi was named interim chief after Chief Richard "Smokey" Dyer retired in July.

The city held a national search before choosing Berardi as Dyer's replacement.

Berardi has been with the Kansas City Fire Department for 26 years and served the last 11 as deputy chief. He has a Master of Public Administration from the University of Missouri – Kansas City's Bloch School of Management, a bachelor's degree in business administration from Baker University and an associate degree in fire sciences from Metropolitan Community College.

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